TRIBUTES have poured in for a Cumbrian ‘farmer's farmer’ Gordon Capstick, who has sadly died.

Well-known and respected, Gordon, 75, will be remembered for his work as the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) county chairman in 2001, when he helped steer farmers through the Foot and Mouth crisis.

At the time of his death he was still an active member of the regional livestock board.

He reared and cared for beef and suckler cows at Park House Farm in Heversham near Kendal, which was 750 acres at its peak.

Fellow Cumbrian farmer and NFU Cumbrian Council delegate, Alistair Mackintosh said: “He was for me the salt of the earth. He brought me into the NFU political side and is the reason why I have done the things I have done for the NFU. He was a farmer's farmer. He had a dry sense of humour. He never used 100 words when ten would do. People like Gordon you cannot replace. These type of people are irreplaceable. I will miss Gordon, he just kept everyone grounded.”

A keen motorsport enthusiast, Gordon started racing in the 1960s as an international rally co-driver, his last competitive drive the 1995 RAC rally. At the time of his death he was the President of Kirkby Lonsdale Motor Club.

Gordon died of a coronary condition, last Saturday, surrounded by his family, in the Royal Lancaster Infirmary, having tested negative for Covid-19. His wife, Mary said: “Gordon loved being involved with Cumbria YFC both as a member and as a parent adviser. He was Southern District President and County President. He was also proud to sit on Westmorland County Show management committee.”

Gordon was also a member of Heversham parish councillor, the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution (RABI), and for more than 20 years NFU Mutual’s local insurance assessor for farms in the South Lakes area. Along with Mary, he opened the farmgate to school visits, and also wrote a farming diary for The Westmorland Gazette.

NFU Carlisle senior group secretary, Ian Mandle, added: “As we all know Gordon was never one to stand back, always on the front foot and getting things done. He will be sadly missed but has left plenty for us to remember him by.”

Gordon leaves son Paul, who takes over the running of the farm, daughters Rachel and Nina and nine grandchildren. Mary added: “I will miss Gordon’s good humour and quick wit. It’s fair to say he wasn’t a happy retiree and could always be found at the farm doing fetching, carrying and odd jobs. He liked to be out and was really missing his Last of the Summer Wine friends at the auctions.”